March 5, 2009 / 1:19 PM / 11 years ago

Britain invites business leaders to pre-G20 meeting

British Prime Minister Gordon Brown addresses a joint meeting of Congress, in front of Vice President Joe Biden (L) and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, on Capitol Hill in Washington, March 4, 2009. REUTERS/Jason Reed

LONDON (Reuters) - Britain has invited business leaders from key advanced and emerging economies to a conference on fostering economic recovery and trade two weeks before the G20 summit, the government said on Thursday.

The G20 Business Conference, to be held at Prime Minister Gordon Brown’s London residence on March 18, will aim to “map out the challenges to international business on the path to recovery,” Britain’s business ministry said in a statement.

It will look at how actions taken by governments to counter the financial and economic crisis are affecting global businesses and seek ways to overcome obstacles to trade.

“The global banking crisis that has buffeted businesses around the globe won’t be reversed without a coordinated international plan of action,” Business Secretary Peter Mandelson said in a statement.

“Only with a clear agenda for recovery will our businesses emerge stronger and as a result ready to take on the environmental and economic challenges of the 21st century world,” said Mandelson, a former European Union trade commissioner.

The conference’s conclusions will feed in to the G20 meeting in London on April 2 that aims to stabilize financial markets and put the world economy on a path to recovery.

The business conference will include business leaders from Britain, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, South Korea, Mexico, the Netherlands, Russia, Turkey, Spain and the United States.

It will focus on rejecting protectionism, the obstacles to agreement on the Doha round of world trade liberalization talks, the dwindling supply and increasing cost of trade finance, and on what government actions have been effective in combating the economic downturn.

Reporting by Adrian Croft; Editing by Patrick Graham

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